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Spencer Foreman Award for Outstanding Community Service

The Spencer Foreman Award for Outstanding Community Service is presented annually to a U.S. AAMC-member medical school or teaching hospital with a long-standing, major institutional commitment to partnering with the community it serves to identify and address community needs. The award highlights community service and engagement as important elements of the academic mission and singles out institutions that can serve as examples of social responsiveness on the part of the academic medical community. This commitment should be demonstrated through the development and implementation of exceptional educational, clinical, and research programs that go well beyond the traditional service role of academic medicine and reach communities whose needs are not being met by the health system. 

The award was renamed in 2007 to honor Spencer "Spike" Foreman, M.D., who established the award in 1993 while serving as chair of the AAMC.

The awardee receives a commemorative crystal piece honoring the institution’s extraordinary social commitment.

Selection Criteria

Nominees will be judged on the following criteria:

  • Strength and breadth of institutional support for community-focused scholarship and service
  • Evaluation of programs demonstrates significant benefits to the institution and community
  • Programs and services developed in response to health and social needs prioritized by community members
  • Evidence of community-based partnerships and community codeveloped interventions
  • Programs coordinated across and directly linked to research, education, and clinical missions
  • Innovativeness of community-based programs and initiatives
  • Breadth of engagement by individuals across the institution
  • Evidence that the institution is maximizing its potential in community service and engagement

The award recipient must have a broad-based, continuing commitment to community service and partnership as reflected in a variety of programs and initiatives that are responsive to community-identified health and social needs, developed via bidirectional collaborations with the communities served, and evaluated in order to assess their impacts on populations and individuals. The award does not honor any one specialized service program or individual but rather recognizes instances in which a broad-based collaboration has developed between the nominee and the community served.

Guidelines for Entry

U.S.-based AAMC-member medical schools and teaching hospitals are eligible to apply if their institution has not received the award in the past 10 years. Institutions selected as finalists can reapply in two years.

The nomination package must include:

  • A cover letter signed by the medical school dean or hospital CEO making the nomination
  • A narrative description (not to exceed six pages) of the nominee’s community programs, including:

    • The history of the institution’s commitment and programs
    • Descriptions of the programs and their impact on the institution and the community
    • A description of the participation of faculty and students
    • A description of how the activities are funded
  • Two letters from individuals outside the institution, preferably community leaders, describing the institution’s programs and their impact on the community
  • A modest selection of news clips from the public press

The nomination package may not exceed 15 pages.

Completed nomination package should be emailed in a single file to Sandra Gordon at by April 7, 2017. Late nominations will not be considered.

The Foreman Award Review Committee will review nominations and select three finalists for site visits during the summer. The winner of the award will be notified by July 31, 2017.  The winner and finalists will be honored at Learn Serve Lead 2017 in Boston.

Please address all questions to:

Sandra Gordon
Association of American Medical Colleges
655 K Street, NW, Suite 100
Washington, DC 20001-2339